Robert Trautmann

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Claims Handling Requirements by State – Tennessee

As promised in my recent post regarding the Gatlinburg fires, today we are looking at the claims handling guidelines provided by the Tennessee code. The Tennessee code has general requirements that require insurance carriers to develop standards and practices for the prompt and proper handling of claims in the Unfair Claims Settlement Practices Act.1… Continue Reading

Rutgers Law School and United Policyholders Launch Essential Protections for Policyholders Project

    If you have spent time handling your own insurance claim or are fortunate enough to represent policyholders in claims with their insruance carriers, you know that not all insurance companies are created equally. Some treat their customers very well. Some don’t. Likewise, not all states are equal when it comes to laws that … Continue Reading

What’s Happening in Appraisal – Part 1

I recently spoke at a seminar our firm hosted for public adjusters. During the seminar, I had at least three separate conversations with public adjusters who voiced their frustration with the current trends in appraisal in the Garden State and beyond. The common thread was a belief that the insurance carriers were using “bought and … Continue Reading

Mending the Hold, Part 2 – New Jersey

In my prior post, I discussed the concept of mend the hold. Essentially the doctrine provides that a party who takes a position can later be estopped from asserting a different, inconsistent position. This is the first in a series of blogs discussing how different states apply the doctrine. The first stop on our tour … Continue Reading

Mending the Hold – an Oldie But a Goodie, Part 1: The Concept

As attorneys representing policyholders, we often hear some pretty interesting stories about claim denials—many of which make little to no sense. Sometimes, after a lawsuit has been filed, the insurance company puts forth new arguments why the claim should be denied as a post hoc justification. To the experienced claims handling professional, often the later … Continue Reading

Review of the Farmers “Next Generation” Homeowner’s Policy, Part 4: Special Limits On Certain Personal Property

This post is a return to my review of the Farmers “Next Generation” Homeowners policy. During this review, we have seen that this policy makes many, often subtle, tweaks to the standard homeowner’s insurance policy that results in many benefits…to Farmers. Today we are looking at the special limits placed on certain categories of personal … Continue Reading

James Bond and Property Insurance

This past weekend as the cold really started to set in the Northeast, I was fortunate enough to head south to Sarasota, Florida, to spend some time with my Merlin Law Group colleagues at our annual retreat. The retreat is a great time for us to get together as one team, collaborate and improve our … Continue Reading

“Renewal” of a Policy Must Contain Identical Terms to the Original Policy

Commercial insurance policies are often complex agreements with many levels of coverages, sub-limits and exclusions. Negotiations of policy terms often take time and lots of back and forth between the prospective policyholder and the insurance carrier. Because of this, these sorts of policies are often multiyear agreements that will include automatic renewal language or a … Continue Reading

New Insurance Product May Help Cover Gaps in Traditional Commercial Policies for Hurricanes

Commercial insurance policies are as varied as they are numerous. One thing they all generally have in common is coverage exclusions and high hurricane deductibles. New Paradigm Underwriters, LLC is offering a new insurance product called Hurricane PM. Hurricane PM is part deductible buyback policy part gap coverage that gets the insured paid from dollar … Continue Reading